The Furthest Station by Ben Aaronovitch

The Blurb On The Back:

There’s something going bump on the Metropolitan line and Sergeant Jaget Jumar knows exactly who to call. 

It’s PC Peter Grant’s speciality …

Only things are more than just going ‘bump’.  Traumatised travellers have been reporting strange encounters on their morning commute, with strangely dressed people trying to deliver an urgent message.  Stranger still, despite calling the police themselves, within a few minutes the commuters have already forgotten the encounter – making the follow-up interviews rather difficult.

So with a little help from Abigail and Toby the ghost hunting dog, Peter and Jaget are heading out on a ghost hunting expedition.

Because finding the ghost and deciphering their urgent message might just be a matter of life and death. 

The Review (Cut For Spoilers):

When Sergeant Jaget Jumar starts getting reports from commuters on the Metropolitan Line that they’re being harassed by weirdly dressed people only for the commuters to then deny they’d ever called the police, he knows to call in PC Peter Grant and the Folly.  Aided by his teenage neighbour Abigail Kamara (last seen in WHISPERS UNDERGROUND and who’s been spending her time learning Latin and more about the magical world) and Toby the dog, Peter’s pretty certain that he’s dealing with ghosts but what do they want and why are they haunting the Metropolitan Line?  His investigation will take him to Amersham, the outmost station on the Tube network and into the records of some of his predecessors at the Folly …

Ben Aaronovitch’s fantasy novella is an okay standalone read within the PETER GRANT universe that re-introduces Abigail Kamara (who I want to see more of in future books) and I enjoyed the interaction between Peter and Jaget but the plot itself meanders with time jumps robbing it of tension, an ending that lacks any explanation, Toby is underused and I just didn’t feel as if this added anything to Peter’s world.

Although there’s not a lot more learned about Peter and where he is in this novella (and it’s completely silent on Leslie and the Faceless Man), I enjoyed his reluctant recognition of Abigail’s talents almost as much as I enjoyed her pointed attitude towards him.  Jaget remains one of my favourite characters and it was good to learn more about his home life and Nightingale’s and Molly’s cameos are always welcome.  Although I enjoyed the ghost element, I just wished that the story had been more substantive and the fact is, the revelation of what’s really going on has a poor pay-off that lacked a rationale (something that even Peter seems to acknowledge at the end).  Given the price of this book, to be honest I don’t think the story here is value for money and it’s really one for PETER GRANT completists only.

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